The safest way for parents to transport their kids around town is not in their own car, but rather in one of the ridesharing services that cater exclusively to children, according to a just-released Zendrive study. The study is based upon data from more than 870,000 trips with 10 million miles traveled. Analysis of the data reveals that kid-focused ridesharing services such as Shuddle, HopSkipDrive and Kidzjet are significantly safer than vehicles driven by either non-professional drivers or general ridesharing services.
Data for the study was sourced from Zendrive’s integration with a variety of mobile applications serving ridesharing services and non-professional drivers, which provides a very large data set for in-depth analysis. The data covers the summer vacation period (June to August 2015); a time when many parents need to transport their children around town for various activities.
Ridesharing services designed exclusively for kids secured an overall Zendrive Score* of 88, which is excellent, compared with a Zendrive Score of 81 for general ridesharing fleets and 78 for non-professional drivers, according to the study. Children’s rideshare fleets smartly employ mothers and parents as drivers who care for their passengers as they would their own children.
Overall Zendrive Safety Score* for the U.S.’ leading kids rideshare services compared to standard rideshare fleet drivers and non-professional, individual drivers.
In addition to overall score comparison, we looked at key risky driving behaviors such as distracting phone use while driving, aggressive braking and speeding. First we analyzed the probability of a driver posting at least one driving infraction on a trip. Our analysis of the trip-level data showed that general ridesharing drivers were 2.3X more likely to engage in mobile phone use on a typical trip when compared to Kids Ridesharing services — a primary cause of distracted driving. And for parents thinking of sending kids in a carpool with another parent, the study finds that non-professional drivers were 2.2X more likely to use a mobile phone while driving when compared to kid-focused ridesharing drivers.
These findings take on added significance when you consider that according to Warren Buffet and National Safety Council distracting phone-use is on the rise and a major cause for fatal accidents in the US.
Kid-focused ridesharing services were also less likely to engage in aggressive driving or speeding, according to the data. For example, non-professional drivers were 1.6X more likely to drive aggressively than ridesharing services designed for kids and general ridesharing services were 1.5X more likely to drive aggressively.
Kid-focused ridesharing service providers are 1.2–2.3X safer on average than general ridesharing fleets and non-professional drivers on key safety metrics such as distracted driving (phone use), aggressive driving and speeding.
In addition to trip level statistics, the Zendrive study looked at the duration and frequency of the key driving infractions on a typical 15-minute trip and for every 100 miles driven.
With regard to rates of phone usage while driving, general rideshare and non-professional drivers spent 230% more time on phones while driving than kid-focused rideshare drivers.
An examination of data related to aggressive driving revealed that general ridesharing drivers are 1.4X more likely to engage in aggressive driving behaviors as kids-focused ridesharing drivers. Non-professional drivers were 1.5X as likely as kid ridesharing drivers to engage in such driving behaviors. Aggressive driving includes a range of behaviors from abrupt lane changes to hard turns and braking patterns to tailgating.
An analysis of data related to speeding showed that non-professional drivers had the highest propensity for speeding, with nearly 200% more speeding periods per 15 minutes on the road than children’s rideshare drivers. General rideshare drivers were significantly better than non-professional drivers, but still had 68% more speeding periods per 15 minutes on the road than children’s rideshare drivers.
The importance of safe transportation for children cannot be overstated. Zendrive’s mission is to make driving safer for everyone, and so we will continue to work with leaders in the space to provide the safest transportation for children. Read more on zendrive.com.
Note: We use the term “non-professional” to refer to drivers not paid for driving — that’s most of us.
* Zendrive Score is a combination of Control, Caution and Focus scores to reflect the overall safety of a driver and/or fleet. Control measures the driver’s tendency to drive aggressively- for instance- accelerate, turn or brake beyond normal limits. Caution reflects the driver’s tendency to follow the rules of the road and avoid creating dangerous or hazardous situations. Focus captures the driver’s attention level based on phone usage and other distracted driving behavior.